La Jolie Vie Photography
Each adoption is unique. And each time we begin another adoption journey, we are in a new place in life.
I can say that we've been in the adoption realm for about five years now. Our first journey officially began in April of 2007. Baby #1 arrived in November of 2008. Shortly after her birth, I started an adoption support group in my church, which now meets at local restaurants, and we have 30 members! After Baby #1 arrived, we had two interim care children, a toddler and an infant. I started this blog. Then Baby #2 arrived in November of 2010. I decided that I finally knew enough about adoption to write about it, so I went for it and wrote for several publications: Adoptive Families, Madame Noire, My Brown Baby, Diabetes Forecast, Diabetes Health as well as several guest blog posts. During this time we've had over a dozen birth-family visits and spoken at several adoption trainings. And now, my book on transracial adoption is being published very soon!
Adoption education is never-ending. You don't figure it all out and move on. It's impossible, considering that adoption is ever-evolving, and the adoption of each individual child brings about new challenges, joys, and circumstances.
I'm excited to see what adoption #3 brings into our lives.
Yes, it will be crazy to have three children age four and under. This is NEVER what I imagined for my life. Well, I didn't imagine having Black kids, be it that I married a White man and planned to have biological children. I didn't imagine pulling my girls' hair into puffs and braids and twists instead of simple ponytails. I didn't imagine my kids would have two families---one by birth, and then us. I didn't imagine I'd have this fabulous support group of women.
I'm overwhelmed how blessed I am. I'm equally overwhelmed at how ridiculous it was for me to try to plan my life. :) I'm so thankful that my life didn't go as planned. As I told a recent medical professional, diabetes is really difficult to deal with every day, all day, but without it, I wouldn't have my precious daughters. I would choose diabetes one hundred times over if it meant that this is the life I could have as a result.
I've learned to make peace with my disease and embrace what it has given me.
I've learned to enjoy each of my daughters---their unique personalities, appearances, and temperaments.
I've learned what doesn't kill you, literally, really does make you stronger.
I've learned that a lot adults don't know what they are talking about when it comes to race and adoption.
I've learned that kids are way smarter than adults in many ways.
I've learned that biology matters, and doesn't.
I've learned that a child can love two sets of parents.
I've learned that embracing the unknown is rewarding.
I've learned to take risks, hold my breath, and pray for the best.
I've learned that I don't know anything.
I've learned (again) how important it is for a father to be present and active in his children's lives.
I've learned that in order to be a great leader, I first must be a great student.
I've learned that to those much is given, much is expected.
MY JOY IS FULL.
So, in conclusion,
Dear Baby #3,
We can't wait to meet you. Your sisters are going to lick you, tickle you, wrestle you, hug and kiss you, cuddle you, baby-talk you, feed you. You'll be overwhelmed by their attention.
I promise to love you for who you are. I promise to treat you as an individual and not just one of the pack. I promise to honor your biological parents and do whatever I can to foster a relationship with them that benefits you.
You are a gift from God. You will live an extraordinary life when you seek and follow God's leading in your life. I can't wait to see what happens next.
Love you already,
Your Waiting Mama